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Subject: [l/m 5/4/2009] rec.backC DISCLAIMER -- Distilled wisdom (1/28) XYZ
This article was archived around: Thu, 1 Apr 2010 12:20:01 +0000 (UTC)
news.answers: follows Disclaimer.
Distilled wisdom (panel 1)
This is rec.backcountry. And the poster is the assistant to the r.b.nimng
ranger (he's a ranger, not the net.police or net.sheriff as some would like).
Read the warnings, read the disclaimer, and if you are reading this in
news.answers, read the special addition, and maybe the Table of Contents
following the electronic zoological report.
1) The "outdoors" are HAZARDOUS, LETHAL, FATAL, TERMINAL w/o extreme prejudice.
As of this count, more than three readers of this group are now former-readers
(see panel 16 for a combined count).
Anyone, including highly experienced people, can be killed.
We have buried our own dead FOR REAL.
2) The information given in this chain of postings should be taken with
a grain of salt. Failure to heed this advice goes back to warning 1.
This goes for information with economic consequences.
3) There is no such thing as an "outdoors expert." Experienced people
realize this. The mountain does not know that you are an expert.
A person is an expert in a subject when he not only knows everything
you can learn about it, he also knows which of that stuff is wrong.
Marilyn vos Savant
4) A memorial to my friends, our friends, our fallen comrades,
our admirations is integrated as a rec.climbing FAQ panel. Why climbing?
Most were climbers.
"A man's got to know his limitations..."
--Harry Callahan, Magnum Force
[Also quoted by Galen Rowell]
This news group is unmoderated
This group has a rating potential of X (or A) [sometimes sexually
explicit material is posted], but this is rare.
If the MPAA were rating, R rated posts appear in less than 1% of the
posts. Parents must be aware of this. No central authority currently
exists for complaints. Don't complain to me. Use rec.scouting
(also unmoderated, also has X potential).
Most posts are G or PG-13.
Group flame wars: Most flame wars never get above 1st degree burns.
A rare war will have a 2nd degree flame. Third degree flames
typically affect the wider net (e.g., C/S green card posts,
pyramid scams, etc.) i.e., "greater, deeper damage." Very rare here.
"Is this all there is?"
"Books are not a substitute for skill, nor can they make safe those who do not
practice the principles of safety. Books are not substitutes for training.
We do not wish to discourage people who have age old urges. But they can
answer simple problems and questions. It is urged that the inexperienced
avail themselves of instruction, training, and mentorship. We would
counsel you remember the virtues of progressive training: ... you crawled
before you walked and walked before you ran. It would be well to take
your pioneering in little nibbles rather than big leaps. Try the easy off
trail walks first, then the easy peaks, then the harder ones, always covering
yourself with a good route of retreat and plenty of time to make it. And
always herald the philosophy of Norman Clyde: The mountain will always be
there tomorrow. Aim to be able to say the same of yourself."
Adapted from the words of (the late) Hervey Voge and David Brower.
The history of rec.backcountry began in the late 1980s. It is a child
of the rec.skiing (net.ski) news group and the climbing mailing list started
by Fritz Nordby at Caltech (now defunct). Before you recommend a split,
you should realize that backcountry has split.
The children of rec.backcountry include such notable news groups as
rec.boats.paddle, rec.hunting, rec.climbing, rec.scouting, alt.fishing,
rec.outdoors.fishing, and numerous other groups.
news.answers: This post is the first part of a 28 part experimental FAQ
post (a chain). The other 27 parts are listed in the contents below.
The other 27 parts are posted one day at a time. These additional parts
are NOT posted to news.answers but can be read by temporarily subscribing to
rec.backcountry. The composition of all attributes in
the contents and Header were deliberately set for the instrumentation and
experimentation toward discussion self-moderation and maintenance
(for instance "FAQ" appears no where in the Subject line; the host is also
a special host, etc.). The chain's headers (Subject line) are useful like
a light house beacon. The post is issued at the same time from the same
host on each of those days: this makes a useful network metric. Failed
postings imply either the posting host dying, or a network connection
dropping/failing. These posts are also a useful test of literacy
(how far you read, how well you read, etc.). Occasionally you will see
uninformed people read and comment about them (they didn't reach this
paragraph, or the message didn't reach them, or they have not figure out
what's going on [clueless]). There is alot going on here and its all
very deliberate. Well,... not all. ;^)
Electronic Zoological content of this backcountry:
SO far we have readers who would be (Hey! One life at a time, please):
3 Buzzards (1 Buteo buteo)
2 Red tailed hawk
Great Horned Owl
Chough (pronounced "chuff".) Pyrrhocorax graculus
NA ground mammals
2 Yellow bellied marmot
3 Mountain Goats
4 Otter (maybe 1 river)
Poodle (with a Mohawk, Pampered Poodle with Perm)
2 Lynx (1 Canadian)
3 cougars or panther (black, of course and 1 garden-variety golden type)
1 domestic cat
1 bob cat
2 Grizzly Bears
4 Black Bears
Kodiak Bear (she)
2 Polar Bears
1 non descript Bear (ro-)
10 Wolves (4 Timber)
1 Vixen (female fox)
Giant squid (ala 20K leagues under the sea)
Golden Trout (with the Right Stuff)
Ring Tailed Lemur
2 Elephant (1 - African)
Lion (King of the jungle)
2 Tiger (1- white)
Western Red Cedar
Fungus (Tinea cruris)
2 Giardia lamblia
The formation of a usenet group on caving has long been a subject
of controversy. Most cavers that live in the US and Australia prefer that
caving remain "low profile", while cavers in Europe prefer a "high profile"
approach. Much of this has to do with the type of caves and caving that
occur in these regions, and the differences in conservation ethics.
There are different types of resource management for different types of
cave systems. Due to the often extensive destruction of cave resources that
seems to occur in the US after a cave location has been made public, it was
decided by the international caving community to keep electronic caving
within a moderated mailing list (see below). This ensured that caves
suffer minimal destruction, while still allowing caving information to be
distributed on a world wide basis. This also made certain that information
could reach the maximum number of individuals (e-mail is MUCH more extensive
and reliable than usenet access).
Alt.caving was formed in spite of opposition from the caving community.
It was not formed by anyone associated with caves OR caving. The person
that formed this group was actually interested in hollow-earth phenomenon,
tombs, etc. Because the person forming this group also botched the
formation process, it it NOT carried by many systems. This means that
distribution is EXTREMELY limited and most people are unable to see or
respond to this newsgroup.
So what does all of the above mean?
1) Most of the experienced cavers CAN'T see or respond to the questions on
alt.caving. Their news feeds don't carry it. It is unlikely that you
will receive responses to your posts.
2) Because it was formed IN SPITE OF the cavers opposition, and because
the group is unmoderated, the VERY few cavers that can see alt.caving
are willing to give information out. They expect the person that
is truly interested in caving to join the cavers mailing list, like
everyone else. Again, because the mailing list is carried via e-mail,
the maximum number of people can get it, and respond to it. Also
remember, the cavers are only trying to protect the caves. Once a cave
is destroyed, it is PERMANENT.
3) Because it lacks the support of the caving community, the information
posted on alt.caving is suspicious, at the very best. The majority of
people posting to the group are individuals with limited experience.
(The more experienced cavers know about the mailing list and post there).
Because most of the people posting to alt.caving ARE of limited
experience, the information has a higher probability of being wrong,
or only good for a certain type of cave.
4) The cavers are NOT trying to keep you from caving. Most cavers realize
that it is impossible to learn caving from an electronic forum. There
will be too many holes in the information provided. NOTHING can equal
training. If the cavers are reluctant to give out information, it is
because they are trying to ensure that you seek out and receive training
from an instructor that knows what they are doing. Both rec.backcountry
and rec.climbing are monitored by cavers. They will provide you with
resources for training IF you ask for it. YOU CAN GET KILLED WHILE CAVING,
especially if you don't know what you are doing!
Of course, all individuals that are truly interested in caving are invited
to join the cavers mailing list. See below for details.
- Cindy Heazlit, NSS 22980F
Any comments on the above should be directed to:
Please put alt.caving in the subject line.
In the US, the national caving organization is the NSS at
Caving can't be learned from a book. The best way to learn about caving
in the US (or anywhere else) is to join a local caving club, usually an
NSS Grotto. Try:
The discussion Website
is for people who want to learn about caving as well as for active and
formerly active cavers. This is not a US-only discussion group; anyone
can join. One thing is forbidden: cave locations, because caves get
trashed and beginners may need to get rescued or even die if they don't
know what they're doing.
[This doesn't supercede anything that Cindy Heazlitt has in her
paragraphs about the Cavers Digest, which still apply.]
From Panel 26,
Send all submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org
Send all subscribe/unsubscribe requests to email@example.com
Visit the website at http://www.caversdigest.com/
In the UK:
TABLE OF CONTENTS of this chain:
1/ DISCLAIMER <* THIS PANEL *>
3/ Learning I
4/ learning II (lists, "Ten Essentials," Chouinard comments)
5/ Summary of past topics
6/ Non-wisdom: fire-arms topic circular discussion
7/ Phone / address lists
8/ Fletcher's Law of Inverse Appreciation / Rachel Carson / Foreman and Hayduke
9/ Water Filter wisdom
10/ Volunteer work
11/ Snake bite
13/ Questions on conditions and travel
14/ Dedication to Aldo Leopold
15/ Leopold's lot.
16/ Backcountry mortality
17/ Information about bears
18/ Poison ivy, frequently ask, under question
19/ Lyme disease, frequently ask, under question
20/ "Telling questions" backcountry Turing test
22/ Babies and Kids
23/ A bit of song (like camp songs)
24/ What is natural?
25/ A romantic notion of high-tech employment
26/ Other news groups of related interest, networking
27/ Films/cinema references
28/ References (written)
Looking for an H-912 (container).